Thailand is such a diverse and beautiful land, that it is impossible to explore the entire country in just one visit. And even if you return year after year, you will still discover something new each time. If you would like to get the most out of your next holiday in Thailand, why not incorporate one or two of our suggested activities below?
Visit a Floating Market There are a number of floating markets in Thailand, but DamnoenSaduak is probably the best known. Located in Ratchaburi, just over one hundred km south of Bangkok, it takes about two hours by car to get there. Many hotels in Bangkok can help you arrange a driver who will collect you in the morning and bring you back to your hotel in the afternoon. The drive there is a memorable experience in itself, as you watch the urban landscape of Bangkok gradually replaced by lush, green countryside. Once in DamnoenSaduak, you will be offered a guided tour of the bustling canals and village houses, in your own private boat. The waterways are teeming with tiny vessels and canoes, loaded with fresh fruits and exotic vegetables that the local shoppers haggle over. The colorful vendors, dressed in traditional Thai attire and bamboo hats, compete noisily with one another and try to tempt you with an array of Thai holiday souvenirs. Considered too ‘touristy’ by some holiday makers, DamnoenSaduak, does give the opportunity to observe a more traditional way of Thai life that couldn’t be further removed from the experience of supermarket shopping back home! Try visiting as early in the morning as possible, to avoid both the crowds and the hottest part of the day.
Go Elephant Trekking in the North For many, Elephant Trekking in the north of Thailand is considered the highlight of their Thai holiday and an experience to treasure forever. These days, you can ride an elephant almost anywhere in Thailand, including the busy tourists areas in Phuket where they do seem a little out of place! But nothing beats riding these majestic animals in their own natural habitat. Travel to Chiang Mai and visit the amazing Maesa Elephant Camp, home to the largest colony of elephants in northern Thailand. Here you can spend time observing the elephants enjoying their native environment and learn more about their behaviour. In Chiang Dao, just north of Chiang Mai you can combine an elephant trek with an interesting and educational visit to meet some of the ethnic hill tribes in the surrounding countryside. For a real holiday adventure, try one of the package trips that include elephant trekking, bamboo rafting and a few nights in the remote hilly villages, with all meals and accommodation included.
Dance the Night Away at a Full Moon Party in KohPhangan If the isolation of Chiang Dao or lesser populated Krabi is not appealing and you are a bit of a party animal at heart, then you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity of a Thai Full Moon Party. The biggest and most famous of these is held on the beautiful and normally, tranquil island of KohPhangan. Each month revelers from all around the world suddenly descend on the island, swelling the population by as much as 30,000 in high season. The majority excitedly make their way to HaadRin, the beach where most of the action takes place. If you are looking for the celebration of a lifetime, you will definitely enjoy the hedonistic experience at HaadRin. Here, against the backdrop of a stunning full moon, you can dance and drink the night away with newly acquired friends, to an endless stream of music, blasting out of the competing sound systems. Not until dawn does peace finally return to KohPhangan, when even the most die-hard party goers finally succumb to exhaustion and fall asleep on the beach.